Implicit social cognition through years: The Implicit Association Test at age 21

The advent of implicit measures opened the access to processes of which people might not be completely aware but that can still influence their attitudes, preferences, and behaviors towards different objects. Among the existing implicit measures, the Implicit Association Test (IAT; Greenwald, McGhee, & Schwartz, 1998) is one of the most studied and used. The descriptive literature review presented in this work was aimed at providing an overview of how the IAT has been used from the year of its first introduction until current days. Specifically, the main fields of application of the IAT, the specific topics for which it has been used, and its concurrent use with other implicit measures have been highlighted and described. When possible, information on the samples on which the studies were carried out are reported. Results indicate an on-going growth of the IAT in a constantly wider range of topics. The ability of the IAT to overcome self-presentation biases and to access the implicit aspects of attitudes have been particularly exploited for investigating biases towards different out-groups, especially in sensitive contexts.